Recently I went to a restaurant I’d never tried. It didn’t serve cheeseburgers. They had a “pitcher” of water on the table that was a glass bottle shaped a bit like a milk jug from decades ago. The bottle top was some kind of hinged cap. I couldn’t figure out how to open it. I was meeting a woman who wanted some counseling and I, by personal policy, insist on such meetings to be in a public place. She had gone to the counter to order a coffee. As I fiddled with the water jug, a male patron nearby watched me with a bemused look on his face. I think I frustrated him. Finally he said “Pull it towards me.” I did. It opened. I thanked him and he said “Good thing that lady wasn’t sitting there.”
His point was that I would appear to be a helpless man if I couldn’t open a water bottle. I said, “It doesn’t matter. I am who I am.”
As I enter my sixth decade of life, it’s taken all of those years to reach the point where I really don’t care that I appear somewhat incompetent at opening odd water bottles. Orientating objects in three dimensional space has always been a problem for me. It’s why I don’t build things very well. Some things I do well. Some things I don’t. It’s not going to change except the number of things I don’t do well is likely to increase when I get very old.
That’s a far cry from the young man who hated to appear fallible, disguised his weaknesses and tried to seem confident when trembling with fear. In those years, I avoided doing anything that I could not do well. Today, I don’t care if I look weak. I AM weak quite often. God made me this way and I’ve learned to accept it. As Paul the apostle would eventually understand…
2 Corinthians 7 Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me—to keep me from exalting myself! 8 Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. 9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness.” (NASB)